“Trump effect” in Bonn climate talks?

An online news outlet that tracks UN climate conferences has a dynamite story titled “‘Don’t wake the bear’: fragile climate talks begin in Bonn.” The bear in this case is President Trump. The article is about something called the “Trump effect” which is scaring the heck out of the Bonn negotiators.

The Trump effect has several aspects, one of which is that no one wants to officially admit that it exists. The outlet — “Climate Home News” — is a trusted ally of the negotiators, so it was able to get some to admit off the record that the Trump pullout from the Paris Agreement is potentially a serious problem.

To begin with, and we have already talked about this, the US is still at the negotiating table because quitting the Paris Agreement takes several years. In fact the Trump delegation is reported to be about 50 people strong, which is not small. These negotiations proceed via many simultaneous work group meetings so you need a lot of people just to keep your hand in. Small delegations cannot do this so they band together into various negotiating teams.

The principal fear is that the Trumpers will be disruptive. This does not mean beating on the table with their shoes, although that would be great fun indeed. In diplomatic language, disruptive may simple mean disagreeing and being stubborn about it. Sounds like Trump to me.

Climate Home puts it this way: “This is a consensus body and to function it needs the US. Trump could utterly derail the talks if he chose.”

Another potential disruption is that in order to get the Paris Agreement the Obama people made a number of informal promises to the developing countries. The Trump people may now disavow these deals, which could cause the more radical developing countries to revolt. Their feeling is that they gave up a lot and they may want it back.

At the top of the list of promises is that the US and the other developed countries would cough up $100 billion a year beginning in 2020. Trump will never go for that one. Probably topping the list of developing country concessions is the right to sue the developing countries for what is called “loss and damage” due to human caused climate change. As you can see, this is all about money, not science.

There is also the fear that the Trump people will try to talk other countries into pulling out of the Paris Agreement. After all, Trump’s stated reasons for leaving are all economic and every country has an economy. A number of countries, from Poland to India, are not real happy with the Paris stuff. According to a recent report from the UN Environment Program, a number of large emerging economies are investing heavily in new coal fired power plants. This is clearly contrary to the Paris Plan.

What this says to me is that President Trump himself should go to the Bonn COP 23 climate conference. President Obama went to several of these COPs, as the only way to get what he wanted out of them. France’s President is already scheduled to be there, as is Germany’s Merkel (whose government is presently threatened for being too green). In fact last minute visits by heads of state are fairly common once the tough crunches finally appear.

Trump showing up would be outrageous, which is just how Trump is. The US delegation is already set to promote fossil fuels in various ways. Even Peabody Energy (read coal) is going to be part of it, which is already pretty outrageous.

Trump should go to Bonn. Just think of the tweets he could send.

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About the Author: David Wojick, Ph.D.

David Wojick is a journalist and policy analyst. He holds a doctorate in epistemology, specializing in the field of Mathematical Logic and Conceptual Analysis.

  • J T

    Heh, heh, heh. I guess you brain-dead climate alarmists know who the boss is, now. Serves you right, fools.

    • MichaelR

      Your overestimatation of your country’s importance is so funny. The US will not even be the biggest world economy within 10 years. China will overtake you. The US is a smaller and smaller part of the world economy every year.

      If you really think it is a good thing for the US to be sabotaging other countries’ work on this issue then it just shows your character for what it is and shows that you just want the US to be the world’s worst neighbor. That will have consequences. You will find the US permanently loses the respect or consideration of it’s neighbors and allies. That will have consequences for your geopolitical power and prosperity.

      At the beginning of the 20th century, the British thought that their hegemony of world power was secure. Within 20 years the collapse of their dominance of world events was already happening. Your backward, isolationist and hubristic attitudes will take the US the same way.

      • J T

        Please. The whole Paris deal is predicated on America paying for it all. Now that’s not going to happen. THAT”S why we’re the boss.

        • MichaelR

          How do you figure that? Yes, it was down as the largest contributor (not suprising as it has the world’s largest economy in absolute terms, and a high per capita GDP vs counties like China and India, and a highly carbon intensive economy) but it was by no means “paying for it all”. Is less than 30% paying for it all? If I was buying you dinner and the bill came for $100 and I put down $29, would you be thanking me for paying the bill?

          It was also pretty far down on the list of funders per capita with countries like the U.K., Norway and Sweden dramatically outspending it on that measure.

          https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/06/02/climate/trump-paris-green-climate-fund.html

          Besides, that was not even my point. My point was that most other countries wanted more ambitious and binding targets. The rest of the world indulged the US to keep it on board so the overall deal was weaker than the rest of the world wanted, but at least the US was on board. Then the US welched on they deal.
          That is shitty behaviour and has been seen as such.

          • J T

            Actually, my post isn’t my real point, either.
            My point is that the whole thing is nothing but wealth re-distribution anyhow, and the global Socialists at the top know this. It is only their useful minions who think it’s all about saving the planet. Man-made climate change is total bullsht. That’s why the climate alarmists are constantly caught falsifying their data. Their climate models don’t give them the results they want, and they change the data. If they were right, they wouldn’t have to lie, it’s that simple.

            • MichaelR

              So this global socialism… the money pledged in the Paris Accord is considerably less than the US and other countries spend on foreign aid. USAID spent $23Bn in fy2016 to help poor countries, ie to stop people dying of hunger and curable diseases, as well as helping these countries develop so they can look after themselves. Should all that spending stop? Do rich countries have any responsibility to help poor countries?

              On the evidence for climate change, you are mistaking science improving its processes for some kind of nefarious deceit. The whole point of science is that it is always refining and improving its theories. If the corrections that were done to, say, the RSS temperature data were not robust the why couldn’t scientists actually see that and point it out in peer reviewed journals? As it was, it just brought the RSS data more or less into line with 4 other independent datasets, which is exactly what you would expect if the revised data was correct.

              On the other hand, climate deniers are CONSTANTLY being debunked due to their sloppy methodology, cherry picking data, misrepresenting conclusions, misquoting people, using arguments from authority in place of real evidence, etc etc. And yet you happily go on believing people who are proven liars. Don’t you get how stupid and hypocritical that is? There is another recent article on this site about an event at EIKE where Lord Christopher Monckton is attending. He is a darling of the denier community but he has been found lying and contradicting himself over and over and over for years. So why would anyone listen to a word he says? Well it’s because he will say what you want to hear, and that is more important than the fact that he is a proven fraud. Delingpole, Crowder, Watts, etc, they are all the same. They are treated with reverence as authorities by climate deniers even though they are shown to be wrong, black and white, over and over.

              • J T

                MichaelR, you reveal your Saul Alinsyan tactics by accusing others of what you’re guilty of, always.

                • MichaelR

                  Are you denying that Monckton, Crowder, Delingpole, etc have not been repeatedly found to be pedalling misrepresentations of the actual science they claim to be reporting?
                  I can even point you to examples in articles on this site.

        • MichaelR

          This week’s Economist, which firmly believes in free markets, liberal values and capitalism, has made my point about the US losing its global power and influence its cover story.
          https://www.economist.com/news/leaders/21731132-presidential-tour-asia-cannot-hide-fact-america-has-turned-inward-hurting-itself

          • J T

            We’re not losing it, we’re re-gaining it.

  • Kriilin Namek

    Time to derail the green gravy train. Bigly!

  • Roland Sauve

    Admit it folks, it is all about money, give us money and we the UN will make large inroads for you. What a crock of you know what.